Fall may have just started here in the Panhandle, but the Walton County Sheriff's Office is already looking forward to Spring...spring break that is.
It's one of several issues discussed Monday in a town meeting between Sheriff Mike Adkinson and residents of South Walton County.
If Sheriff Adkinson is like the CEO, he said the citizens are his stakeholders. He said there's really no better way to better Walton County than to ask those who live and work there every single day.
"This is our opportunity to stand up and be accountable," said Adkinson.
Surrounded by a room full of concerned home and business owners, Adkinson addressed the major issues facing the South Walton community; namely drugs, traffic and noise issues.
"Those are both two issues that are before the Board of Commissioners. Now, we hope they make a decision. They are working on it. But, I know that it is such a big issue to the citizens here, we heard it tonight, that the sooner the board makes a decision on it, the sooner we can help enforce it and solve and issues or concerns that come up with it," he said.
He said the town hall was less an opportunity to speak his mind and more to hear the voices of those who elected them.
A hot topic was spring break.
Edgewater Beach Resort Homeowners Association President, Suzanne Harris, said underage drinkers' punishment must match their crime.
"We would like to see that the sheriff's are more proactive in arresting the kids that are really damaging places and tearing up units, but we also in return in being more proactive and supporting them when they come," she said.
Adkinson was in agreement.
"Over 5000 arrest state wide in that time period last year, 1200 hundred from here in Walton County. We intend to have that same level of enforcement again this year," said Adkinson.
For now, the Sheriff's office is keeping their ears to the ground, reminding residents to speak up to their district's officer if they have concerns, using the newly implemented district lieutenant program.
This is the third town hall for the Sheriff. The others were held this month in Paxton and Freeport.